This is the dark side of prowling. When the dark days stretch on and the ecstasy that marked a lover has now turned into despair when she becomes a "former" lover.
Perhaps it's the holidays that do it.
Perhaps it's the short days, where the sun is a faded purple sky by 5 p.m.
Those glorious summer nights of making love with a forbidden woman who had potential to be "the one" is now replaced with trying not to slip and fall on an icy sidewalk as you walk to get the mail.
This is the life we've chosen. This is the profession we've chosen.
Not alcohol, which is socially acceptable. Not gambling, which is now government-approved.
These are affairs.
And incredibly fabulous.
I've given up "the life", largely because I have seen the dark side this year. I've flown too close to the sun. A while back, I came home to a wife who filled out divorce papers -- all I had to do was sign - as she "caught me". Well, sort of.
She caught me "enough". Enough where I was out of my house for two weeks. Enough where my kids were wondering "why isn't Daddy here anymore?". Enough where I was doing the math, trying to figure out how I won't be eating Ramen noodles in a year in some crappy apartment after I send away 60% of my take home pay.
The same weekend of my getting kicked out, my lover dropped me. Perhaps she, after weeks of asking when *I* would file and we could start a life together, finally became scared enough that it was about to become real. Perhaps she took a look at me and decided I just wouldn't be as much fun with half my money or living in an apartment for a while. There is a real quality about affairs that is undeniable -- you may see your partner on a "bad day" but, when you meet in a hotel, a park or (gasp) at the other person's house, it is never a bad day. It's a sexy encounter, where you're not worried about a sick child, a medical bill, your job. Certainly not what your spouse thinks.
Each day would turn into possibly even the best sex of your life.
I went into all of this about a year ago, first with an emotional affair and, when that ended, a "manwhore" phase. Damn that was fun. Risky. Guilty feelings tugging all over but undeniably fun. I turned from a man, ignored and neglected at home by a wife, into a man cruising the aisles of Target, batting eyes with all of the mommies to see who would look back, who would say 'hi', who would even stop their chat, smile and chat. Some did. A drug.
And I was and still am an addict.
Of course, all of this could have been so much easier without the feelings. Yet they crept in with the final lover of this run. Have you ever experienced a lover who, even during a "bad day", you look at and, truly believe, "I could make it really work with this person"? Or "I will never tire of waking up next to this person, even when she is 87 and has dentures"?
I finally did. I finally met that woman.
I can't even explain the level of comfort and security that brought.
Even as I allowed myself to believe the pillow talk, the promises in the dark, the notes that said, "should we just both file now and get married next year?" It's so easy to let yourself get caught up in the Fantasyland of a torrid and tantalizing affair. I certainly did.
Turns out she was just in it for the sex. At first, so was I but, gradually, I learned to love the entire person.
The "if only" game starts to come up. "If only" I hadn't believe her soft words after making love. "If only" I had the guts to pull the trigger on the divorce. "If only" I was a little more patient.
Yet when there is a relationship with a "disparity of affection", the clinger (that's me) is at the mercy of the dominator (her). And it hurts. You find yourself at the whim of this person through every facet of the relationship. You're constantly wondering why she shows up, gets naked and rides you like a Brahma Bull but can't send a "sweet dreams" text at the end of the night.
All until, one day, you're in the shower, depressed that she is gone. You look at your well-worn body in the mirror and ask, "why did I have to let the feelings get in the way?"
When you are the clinger, nothing works. You have no power. You ignore her for two weeks but the second she sends a text, you melt and text back, like a puppy that hasn't been fed in a week. You pour your heart out to her, when she is confused and scared, and that only sends her further away.
Once the realization that she herself is now prowling hits, it is an ego crusher. Knowing that richer, more powerful men, some of whom you know casually, are now enjoying the sweet woman who said she wanted to make it forever stabs the soul and pierces the heart.
All because I let the feelings get in the way.
After this, I can't say I have any intention to return to "the life". At least not physically. The real silver lining here is that wife and I have reconciled. All the way. The sex is now at pre-marital levels, three times a week and she is even into it a bit. Wife lost a bunch of weight, cooking dinner again (ha!), smiling at me when I walk in the door and, damn, she is lookin' pretty hot now.
Yet I find it more difficult to pull away from this prowlin' community. I like you people. :) We can be brutally honest in these blogs and forums about what we want, how we are able to live the "double life" and, also, how to protect each other. There is some amount of honor among thieves in this community and I don't want to give that up. It's odd, really. Some of the people I find myself trusting the most are people who can't even be trusted in their own homes.
However, I know that we all share these secrets of our lives -- secrets that could, easily, destroy everything and anything we have spent years building.
Continued fun and frivolity for all of you. Just keep those feelings in check. :)